2012 Faculty Alumni Award Winners

5 June 2012

The Faculty Alumni Awards for 2012 will be presented by the Dean, Professor Mark Adams at the Annual Awards Cocktail Reception held on Friday 22 June in The Great Hall.
On behalf of the Faculty and the Agriculture Alumni Association we congratulate the following recipients.

The Dean, Professor Mark Adams, feels strongly that the professional careers of these award winners are outstanding examples of the heights that can be scaled by agricultural science graduates from The University of Sydney,

"It is because of the breadth and depth of our degrees that graduates can choose from a wide range of career paths. They can go anywhere!", he said.

Alumni Award for Community Achievement

John Maher

BSc Agr Hons '85

John has spent over 25 years in Australia's Agriculture/Agribusiness industry in a number of roles, and has achieved significant success in the business world, holding senior positions in companies including the Australian Meat and Livestock Corporation, NSW Agriculture and Fisheries Department, Wesfarmers, Landmark and his current role as CEO of publically listed rural powerhouse, Ruralco Holdings, which has become Australia's second largest distribution company in Australia, taking its share of the Rural Services market from less than 5% to 25%.

John also has a passion for making a difference to those facing disadvantage and medical challenges in society. Not only has he raised much needed funds for charities including Autism Australia Awareness (AAA), Ronald McDonald House, Variety NSW, Shave For A Cure, Royal Flying Doctors and the Queensland floods, but he consistently lends his personal time and expertise. He is currently Chair of AAA, and was a former Director of The Aussie Helpers Children Fund for three years.

Alumni Award for Professional Achievement

Dr Bruce Lee

BSc Agr Hons '81 MAgr '83

Dr. Bruce Lee receives the Alumni Award for his outstanding contributions internationally to agriculture and biotechnology through his research, as well as his career in global life sciences companies for over 22 years, and his role as the Director of the CSIRO Food Futures Flagship. Throughout his career, Dr Lee has demonstrated commitment to excellence in the conduct, leadership, and commercial utilisation of R&D. In addition to his Master of Agriculture, he also holds a Doctor of Science in Agriculture, Plant Nutrition and Physiology (magna cum laude) from Universit├Ąt Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany.

Bruce's knowledge of the international biotechnology and agricultural sectors has brought direct benefits to CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation) and Australia. He has also been instrumental in mentoring and developing a generation of younger scientists who are not only excellent scientists, but also have expertise in industry management and R&D. Bruce has been recognised with the Business Excellence Award AQ1 AGP, the 2010 Rabobank Agribusiness Leadership Award, and the CSIRO Medal for Business Excellence.

Professor David Lindsay AO

BSc Agr Hons '58 PhD '64

Known as a world authority on animal reproduction, Professor David Lindsay AO receives the Alumni Award for Professional Achievement for major impact on Australian agriculture over his lifetime, for example he was Chair of the Review into Australia's Quarantine System in 1988. And he continues to work tirelessly - at The University of Western Australia - on his research and lectures to better the lives of Australians through agriculture. His outstanding contributions to agricultural science and the community have been widely recognized. These contributions have earned him many distinguished awards including an Order of Australia (1997), Centenary Medal (2001), Fellowship of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (1984), Eminent Scientist Award, New Zealand (2006), and induction into the Western Australian Agricultural Hall of Fame (2012).

He has written over 80 key papers on animal reproduction, particularly of sheep, in addition to contributing to more than 20 books, and writing his own: A Guide to Scientific Writing and more recently Scientific Writing = Thinking in Words. This recent book was cited by the American Libraries Association as the 'outstanding academic title of 2011' and is frequently used by students and researchers.

Professor Scott O'Neill

BSc Agr Hons '85

Professor Scott O'Neill receives the Alumni Award for Professional Achievement for his 22-year career in the area of entomology and human health. He has an extraordinary record, working as an Associate Professor for Yale University, Head of three different Schools at the University of Queensland: Department of Zoology and Entomology, School of Integrative Biology, and School of Biological Sciences, as well as the Deputy Executive Dean for the Faculty of Biological and Chemical Sciences (QLD), and finally, in 2011, becoming the Dean, Faculty of Science, at Monash University. His record is extraordinary!

The majority of Professor O'Neill's research has centered on infecting mosquitoes with parasitic Wolbachia bacteria in order to reduce the viability of dengue-fever carrying mosquito populations in south-east Asian countries. He was among the first researchers to apply molecular biological tools to understand the biology of Wolbachia.

Professor O'Neill has also been distinguished by the Australian Government, which awarded him the Centenary Medal in 2003 for contributions to medical research. He has also been elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, as well as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science, and has also received the Mackerras Medal from the Australian Entomological Society in addition to the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia Achievement Award.


Please see the invitation to the Alumni Awards Cocktail Reception under related.


RSVP is essential by 18 June; please click the following link:

You are welcome to bring a guest.

Contact: Ms Skaidy Gulbis

Phone: 02 8627 1006

Email: 0239370b325678083e0d163b3a6b3a131e172b4f7f5415336f343a